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article imageMany countries consider UN call for ceasefires to fight pandemic

By Ken Hanly     Apr 4, 2020 in World
The UN Secretary-General Antonio Gutteres is pressing countries for a global ceasefire in all conflicts to allow a concentrated joint effort to fight against the COVEID-19 pandemic
UN head wants war only against the COVID-19 pandemic
The Pope and some NGOs have shown interest and support for the project. However, as of this Friday 11 countries were considering the idea including Cameroon, Central African Republic, Colombia, Libya, Myanmar, Philippines, South Sudan, Sudan, Syria, Ukraine and Yemen. Quite a few of the listed nations have substantial domestic conflicts the could benefit from such a ceasefire. Successful ceasefires could also lead to peace talks that could in turn be successful. However, there will obviously be difficulties arranging the details for carrying out any ceasefire. Gutterres noted: “There are enormous difficulties to implementation as conflicts have festered for years, distrust is deep, with many spoilers and many suspicions.”
In updating his earlier appeal Gutterres said: "Ten days ago, I issued an appeal for an immediate ceasefire in all corners of the globe to reinforce diplomatic action, help create conditions for the delivery of lifesaving aid and bring hope to places that are among the most vulnerable to the COVID-19 pandemic. This call was rooted in a fundamental recognition: There should be only one fight in our world today, our shared battle against COVID-19."
Many of interested countries are most vulnerable to the COVID-19 pandemic
While the UN may no doubt hope that some bigger powers would join the list, many of the countries that have responded are very much at risk from the pandemic such as Yemen, Libya, and Syria. The civil wars in these countries have damaged their health care infrastructure. These nations are probably quite aware that aware that continued conflict in the situation will make their situation much worse and make jointly fighting the virus a positive outcome for both sides.
Gutterres noted
that 70 countries, Pope Francis, NGO's and more than one million people had endorsed the UN call for a ceasefire in an online appeal.
More about Un, covid19 pandemic, global conflicts
 
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